{recipe} Heirloom Tomato & Nectarine Panzanella

Last week, we had a terrific meal at Picán Restaurant in Oakland. One of the highlights was a seasonal tomato and peach panzanella (bread salad). I did my level best to re-create it at home and it made for a hearty, simple, summery side dish. Of course, the one at Picán had bacon in it, so that’s always an option…


Heirloom Tomato & Nectarine Panzanella

serves 4


  • 2 medium-sized heirloom tomatoes
  • 1 nectarine
  • 1 1/2 cups baby spinach leaves
  • about 3 cups of bread cubes, cut from a crusty loaf
  • olive oil
  • white wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper
  • shaved or crumbled cheese of your choice (parmigiano, pecorino, feta, goat cheese, etc.)


  • Heat oven to 400. Prepare a sheet pan or cookie sheet with a piece of foil.
  • Cut tomatoes and nectarine into 1/4 inch cubes and place into a large bowl with their juices.
  • Put the bread cubes in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil (1-2 Tblsp) and white wine vinegar (2-3 tsp). Add a sprinkling of salt and pepper and toss together.
  • Spread bread cubes on sheet pan in a single layer. Cook until browned and crisp, about 10-15 minutes, being careful not to burn. Remove from oven.
  • Add bread cubes and spinach to tomato/nectarine bowl. Drizzle with a bit more olive oil and vinegar and mix together with your hands or with tongs. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Add more oil or vinegar if necessary.
  • Let sit about 5-10 minutes before serving. This salad is best when the bread is half crunchy and half soggy.

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